But 44 per cent re­port wors­en­ing con­di­tions

7 Days in Dubai - - BUSINESS -

Busi­ness con­fi­dence in the Mid­dle East has im­proved for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive quar­ter, de­spite eco­nomic growth in the re­gion be­ing at a 30-year low.

How­ever, ac­cord­ing to the Global Eco­nomic Con­di­tions Sur­vey from ACCA (the As­so­ci­a­tion of Char­tered Cer­ti­fied Ac­coun­tants) and IMA (In­sti­tute of Man­age­ment Ac­coun­tants), 44 per cent of busi­nesses re­port wors­en­ing con­di­tions.

The Q3 sur­vey of more than 1,512 fi­nance pro­fes­sion­als and more than 150 chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cers around the world, found that global con­fi­dence is at a 12-month high, boosted by in­creased prospects of gov­ern­ment spend­ing and re­cov­er­ies in China and North Amer­ica.

Lindsay De­gouve de Nunc­ques, head of ACCA Mid­dle East, says that busi­ness con­fi­dence in the Mid­dle East has im­proved as firms and gov­ern­ments ad­just to fall­ing oil prices.

She said: “The con­fi­dence sur­vey high­lights that fall­ing state spend­ing and busi­ness in­vest­ment since the fall in oil prices con­tin­ues to of­fer a down­beat out­look for many firms in the Mid­dle East, although many are feel­ing op­ti­mistic that they are over the worst.

“De­spite the im­prove­ments we have seen, ul­ti­mately re­gional busi­ness con­fi­dence is the low­est any­where out­side Africa or the Caribbean, with 44 per cent re­port­ing wors­en­ing con­di­tions”

De­gouve de Nunc­ques does think, how­ever, that UAE is in a stronger po­si­tion than many other re­gional economies. She added: “The UAE is start­ing to reap some of the ben­e­fits af­ter some tight fis­cal mea­sures fol­low­ing the oil price slump. The bud­get is now in sur­plus, which means that busi­nesses are feel­ing more con­fi­dent that in­vest­ment may no longer con­tinue to fall and may even start to im­prove.”

While the big­gest con­cern for the Mid­dle East re­mains oil prices rather than po­lit­i­cal shocks such as the UK’s Brexit vote, the US elec­tions in Novem­ber could have a more global im­pact.

“De­spite fears that Brexit could un­set­tle the global mar­kets, so far this has not been the case,” said De­gouve de Nunc­ques. “Given the un­cer­tainty sur­round­ing the US elec­tions in Novem­ber, the out­come and re­sponse of the new pres­i­dent will be sig­nif­i­cant for the fu­ture prospects of global free trade.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.